INTERNAL AUSTEIRTY (TAP)
In Prayaschit, one asks for
forgiveness for the various errors of commission and omission, the faults and
sins committed knowingly or unknowingly. This austerity may be performed in
the presence of a monk or nun or can be done alone. Prayaschit helps us to
reflect upon ourselves in a way that leads to self correction. Even for a
small fault we begin to say " Michchami Dukkadam."
One must cultivate humbleness
towards everyone. This austerity leads to tolerance and sympathy towards
others and helps us to overcome ego and anger.
There are four types of
Jnan Vinay - One should be humble
and respectful to those who are superior in knowledge and wisdom.
Darshan Vinay - One should be
humble and respectful to those who have
acquired the true insight of
Charitra Vinay - One should be
humble and respectful to those who have good morals and follow religious
Mana Vinay - One should pay
respect and be humble to all saints who help
others in their spiritual uplift.
Serving others (Vaiyavachch)
Vaiyavachch means serving
religious teachers, ascetics, virtuous people, sadhus, colleagues, and
companions with devotion. One should especially render services to the sick
and weak. Though this austerity seems to be external activity it makes a
person humble and serves the purpose of overcoming ego and hatred.
Giving away (Vyutsarg)
In Vyutsarg, not only one gives
away sinful physical activities but also gives away sixteen different inner
Spiritual Study (Svadhyay)
Svadhyay means to study scriptures
or can also mean to understand the self. Through study we try to answer the
questions: who am I? Who should I be? Through Svadhyay we realize that a soul
is a pure thing. This will lead us to contemplate on the question: what am I
doing in this body? Thus, study will lead you to be a pure soul. This study is
divided into five levels:
When one starts reading the
scriptures it is called Vachana.
While reading some doubts may
arise and trying to resolve them is called Prachana.
After understanding what is right
and contemplating on it is called Anupreksha.
After realizing what is right, one
should contemplate on it again and again so one can stay in focus. This
repetition is called Amnaya.
After learning what self is one
should teach others the same. This is known as Dharmopadesh.
All five of the above are external
svadhyay, but they will lead us to do internal svadhyay about the self. Thus,
one will acquire right perception and right knowledge which will lead to right
conduct and will open up the path to ultimate liberation.
Dhyan means concentration of
thought. This concentration could arise from intense passions like attachment,
lust, or animosity or from the search for the truth and from absolute
detachment towards worldly affairs.
Dhyan is divided into four
In arta dhyan a person reflects on
the i) loss of dear ones (Ishta Viyog), ii) development of a new relationship
with an undesirable or unpleasant person (Anishta Samyog), iii) physical
illness (Roga chinta) and iv) future planning (Agrasocha or Nidanartha).
In raudra dhyan one is absorbed in
taking total revenge for some damage or loss caused by others. There are four
types: i) Hinsanubahndhi, ii) Mrishanubadhi, iii) Steynubandhi, and iv)
Both arta and raudra dhyan lead to
accumulation of bad karmas and therefore art and raudra dhyan should be
Dharma dhyan means reflecting on
the ways and means towards realization of self.
Shukla dhyan means reflecting on
the purity of the soul.
Dharma dhyan and shukla dhyan lead
to the removal of karmas. Therefore, for the purpose of nirjara we shall
contemplate on dharma dhyan and shukla dhyan. If contemplation on dharma dhyan
is at the highest level then we can completely destroy Mohniya karma and
within 48 minutes of the destruction of Mohaniya Karma, Jnanavarniya,
Darshanavarniya and Antaräy Karmas are also destroyed and one becomes a Kevali.